Happy Birthday NHS & Social Care

To celebrate 70 years of both the NHS and Social Care, Healthwatch Dorset has made its own birthday card for local services.

Martyn Webster, Healthwatch Dorset manager, explains:

“Health and Social Care services often ask their patients and service users what they think of the service they receive – was it good, or bad, or somewhere in between? At Healthwatch, we’re keen that services should then take note of that feedback and turn it into action, use it to make improvements.

At our annual summer meeting in Dorchester in July, we asked everyone there to make a present, in the form of feedback, for our local NHS & social care services on their 70th birthday. We’ve summarised them into 2 lists of 7 –

Things that matter to us as patients and service users:

1. Understanding and empathy

2. Making each person feel that they matter

3. Continuity of care

4. Clear, simple language

5. Waiting times

6. Joined up health and care services

7. Care closer to home

And 7 things we would change:

1. Better communication

2. Better information

3. More integrated services

4. Better access to services

5. Better use of technology

6. Better support for carers

7. More mental health awareness awareness

We’ve made a birthday card out of them, which we’ve sent to our local NHS and Social Care services.”

Mr Webster said that the card and the feedback had been welcomed by services.

David Vitty, Head of Adult Social Care Services, Borough of Poole, and Service Director, Adult Social Care, Bournemouth Borough Council, said:

“This is a really helpful touchstone for us to use when planning and delivering services. The things people have identified as being important to them are important to us too, but we don’t always get them right. So this is a helpful reminder”.

You can see the birthday card on Healthwatch Dorset’s website www.healthwatchdorset.co.uk.